ACT mental health services performing well above national standards

Released 02/02/2016

The Productivity Commission’s Report on Government Services has shown the ACT is performing well above national standards in delivering mental health services, Minister for Health Simon Corbell announced today.

“The positive results released today as part of the Productivity Commission’s report demonstrate my strong commitment to focusing on mental health care as a priority area for the government,” Mr Corbell said. 

“Today’s report shows the ACT is performing well above national standards on a number of key indicators in this critical part of our health care system.”

The report shows the ACT’s seclusion rates in 2013-14 were 1.1 per 1,000 patient bed days, well below the national rate of 8.1 per 1,000. The ACT also reported an average duration of seclusion of 2.1 hours in 2013-14, well below the national average of 6 hours and the lowest in the country.

The report also shows positive results on post-discharge community care, with 72.5 per cent of patients receiving follow up within the first seven days following discharge from an acute inpatient psychiatric unit. This was the second highest rate in the country and above the national rate of 66.4 per cent.

“In 2013-14 the ACT also saw improved performance for readmissions to hospital acute psychiatric units within 28 days. The proportion of overnight separations experiencing a readmission is down to 10.7 per cent of patients from 14.4 per cent in 2012-13,” Mr Corbell said.

“The ACT Government is proud of our record when it comes to investment in mental health care services and facilities, which support some of the community’s most vulnerable members.

“This financial year we are investing $133 million, or 9 per cent, of our record $1.5 billion health budget on mental health, noting that according to Australians for Mental Health, just 7 per cent of health spending nationally is on mental health. This is a growth in funding of $26.1 million over the past four years.

“In 2016 the ACT Government will open a new Secure Mental Health Unit, which will have 25 additional mental health beds, and in 2018, will open the University of Canberra Public Hospital, which will have 20 additional mental health beds.”

- Statement ends -

Section: Simon Corbell, MLA | Media Releases

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